Morning News Digest: June 16, 2009

White House officials express concern about Gov. Jon Corzine's re-election bid

National Democratic leaders have their eyes on the New Jersey governor's race – and they don't like what they're seeing. (Margolin and Heininger, The Star-Ledger)

Newark Housing Authority to open solar-powered, low-income townhouses

The city's Housing Authority opens a low-income townhouse development today, that also will be solar-powered starting next month, authority and city officials said. (Ortega, The Star-Ledger)

N.J. lawmakers advance budget proposal; state universities remain uneasy on tuition caps

New Jersey's colleges and universities are unsure about new mandated caps on tuition increases and possible employee furloughs now included in a state budget bill that cleared legislative committees today. (Reitmeyer and Davis, The Star-Ledger)

N.J. could raise tolls, taxes if federal government fails to give $3B for Hudson River tunnel

Funding for New Jersey's second commuter rail tunnel to Manhattan may be $3 billion short of its price tag, which could leave the state few options — such as higher tolls and taxes — if the federal government fails to provide that money. (Davis, The Star-Ledger)

N.J. Senate committee advances bill expanding coverage for autism therapy

Health insurance would cover treatment costing up to $36,000 a year for New Jerseyans with autism and other developmental disabilities, under a bill that cleared a Senate committee today. (Young, The Star-Ledger)

Probe into Pascack Valley debt collection settled

The collection agency that shocked thousands of former Pascack Valley Hospital patients with its efforts to collect on outdated and already-paid bills has settled an investigation by the state Division of Consumer Affairs. (Washburn, The Record)

UPDATE: State budget heads for final vote in Legislature Thursday

New Jersey’s colleges and universities are unsure about new mandated caps on tuition increases and possible employee furloughs now included in a state budget bill that cleared legislative committees Monday. (Reitmeyer and Davis, The Record)

Teachers union delivers no confidence vote on superintendent

The teachers union has taken a vote of no confidence against the superintendent, alleging she has failed to administer and communicate with staff on issues. (Sudol, The Record)

$300G slated for park entrance

The township committee has agreed to bond $300,000 to pave the entrance road at the Thompson Family Park. (Counihan, Gloucester County Times)

Budget wins N.J. panels' blessing

Budget committees in both houses of the New Jersey Legislature yesterday approved a $28.6 billion state spending plan, moving it toward final votes that could come Thursday. (Lu and Tamari, Inquirer)

Ethics board disputes Sánchez's claims

The Philadelphia Board of Ethics issued a statement yesterday disputing City Councilwoman Maria Quinoñes Sánchez's version of events leading up to a lawsuit the board filed against her last week. (Gelbart, Inquirer)

O'Hara High president charged with drunken driving

The president of Cardinal O'Hara High School in Springfield, Delaware County, has been arrested for driving while intoxicated. (Farrell, Inquirer)

Two counties eye $22M in federal stimulus aid

President Barack Obama's economic stimulus package is pouring millions of dollars into the Shore area for county government projects. (Jordan, Asbury Park Press)

Budget moves step closer to passage

Lawmakers in both the Senate and Assembly on Monday advanced the state's proposed budget and its accompanying $1 billion in tax increases into place for final approval later this week. (Symons, Asbury Park Press)

Van Drew among Dems who may not back $28.6 billion budget

State lawmakers pushed the $28.6 billion state budget through committees Monday, but a potential showdown involving state Sen. Jeff Van Drew awaits it as soon as Thursday in the Senate. (Harper, Press of Atlantic City)

Job fair in Somerville targets veterans for employment

Jim Wisor walked between tables of potential employers at a job fair for veterans on Monday, sporting a resume with no shortage of real world experience. (Bricketto, Courier News)

Andrews states case for health care reform

President Obama's plan for health care reform would give consumers more choices for medical care, U.S. Rep. Rob Andrews, D-N.J., said Monday. (Davies, Courier-Post)

Mt. Laurel plans tax hike

Township council introduced a $36.7 million spending plan Monday night, a little more than two weeks after a budget dispute led to the township manager's resignation. (Smith, Courier-Post)

Jackson and Brown sentenced to 25 and 20 months respectively

Two Passaic County politicians – one Democrat and one Republican – received their federal sentences today after pleading guilty to corruption charges. (Pizarro, PolitckerNJ)

The down-ballot implications of Christie's LG pick

Republican gubernatorial nominee Chris Christie has publicly sworn off political considerations in making his eventual Lieutenant Governor pick, arguing that the public will vote largely based on who occupies the top of the ticket. (Friedman, PolitckerNJ) Morning News Digest: June 16, 2009